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08 August 2018, 11:28 | Kelvin Horton
China threatens tariffs on $60 billion in US goods
Trade tensions between the US and China have been escalating for months, driven by President Trump's aggressive rhetoric and policy positions.
That move was a response to the Trump administration's proposal of a 25-percent tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports.
While previously China issued retaliatory tariffs targeting US goods in areas of the USA where President Trump typically finds support, Friday's announcement from China did not identify which USA goods would be hit with the $60 billion in new retaliatory tariffs.
The iPhones, Chevrolets and other products manufactured and sold in China by USA companies are mostly designed in the United States, and the Trump administration has declared various Chinese industries to be threatening US national security, illegally copying foreign intellectual property or causing widespread job losses in the United States. "China has to take necessary counter-measures to defend the country's dignity and the interests of the people, defend free trade and the multilateral system, and defend the common interests of all countries in the world".
The tensions are also having an impact on trade flows.
Meanwhile, Chinese state TV said: "The White House's extreme pressure and blackmail are already clear to the worldwide community".
FILE - White House National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow speaks with reporters at the White House in Washington, June 27, 2018.
The trade war kicked off in earnest in July when Trump imposed a 25% tariff on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports to the U.S., prompting China to respond in kind.
"Every country on earth wants to take wealth out of the U.S., always to our detriment", he tweeted. It's likely that USA crude exporters will be able to find other buyers, but they may have to offer discounts or other incentives to build market share.
Calling the Chinese economy weak from the lawn of the White House in an interview with Bloomberg TV, Kudlow said: "The president has said time and again, that targeted tariffs are going to be part of the gameplan with China - unless, and until, they begin to meet our requests, and so far they have not".
Three rounds of trade negotiations between senior US and Chinese officials earlier this year centered on USA demands for China to make structural changes to its economy and to reduce its trade surplus with America. It's announced 12 billion dollars of assistance to U.S. farmers to ease the burden of retaliatory tariffs imposed by other countries. Last year, China imported some £100bn ($130bn) in goods from the United States. That's in stark contrast to the US' one-size-fits-all tariff approach, which was ill-considered, they said.
The U.S. hit back with tariffs on 1,300 Chinese goods worth $50 billion.
The U.S. has imposed tariffs targeting aerospace, robotics and other forms of technology, while China retaliated with tariffs on agricultural products, seafood and cars, among other things.
Trump has accused China of pursuing unfair trading practices and stealing American firms' intellectual property, while using import tariffs to push Beijing towards renegotiating its trade policy with the US.
The Chinese Ministry of Commerce said it was "forced to do act" after Trump's threat earlier last week to raise a proposed tariff rate on US$200 billion worth of Chinese goods from 10 per cent to 25 per cent.
"Leading China's economy on a stable and far-reaching path, we have confidence and determination", another commentary in the main edition of the People's Daily said.
The dispute is part of broader USA complaints about global trading conditions that have prompted Trump to raise duties on steel, aluminum, washing machines or solar panels from Canada, Europe, Japan and South Korea.
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